He liked caves, and was tempted to set out for it. But distances here were deceptive, and there might not be time before dark; besides, he did not feel the necessary energy inside him. “Tomorrow I’ll come earlier and go up,” he said to himself. He stood looking up the valley a little wistfully, his tongue seeking the fig seeds between his teeth, with the small tenacious flies forever returning to crawl along his face. And it occurred to him that a walk through the countryside was a sort of epitome of the passage through life itself. One never took the time to savor the details; one said: another day, but always with the hidden knowledge that each day was unique and final, that there never would be a return, another time.